Mike Flewitt, 56, joined McLaren Automotive in 2012 as chief operating officer before being made CEO in 2013. Prior to that he had spent nine years in manufacturing roles at Ford, rising to vmanufacturing chief for Ford of Europe. The British-born Flewitt also previously worked at Rolls-Royce and Bentley. Flewitt spoke with Automotive News Europe Correspondent Nick Gibbs.
What influence do hypercars such as the Senna have to your bottom line?
They will earn a couple of times a contribution of a 720S [supercar] but not the multiple you might expect at that price point [750,000 pounds or about 860,000 euros]. They are very expensive cars to design and develop, and you have very limited volume  to recover that investment. The total life cycle of the 720S family is maybe 5,000 to 6000 cars.
Are they valuable in other ways, too?
They are hugely valuable from a brand and communication perspective. The Senna sold out before we showed it to customers in December, but despite that we worked on publicizing that car. Everything that car says about us is what we want to communicate about the brand.
Given the amounts its predecessor, the P1, is getting on the used market, were you tempted to push the Senna’s price higher?
When we do these ultimate projects, fixing the volume and price is very difficult. It’s not that I charge what I feel like and hope it will appreciate and therefore it doesn’t matter. Maybe there are people who think like that, but we don’t. I’m delighted when they do appreciate; that is fabulous for the customers. But I don’t sell them as an investment asset.